"Pinching" a MRE Rx

Doing too much thinking lately.

Has anyone ever “pinched” a Mad River Explorer Royalex? I will be dragging mine out of mothballs this spring, and as I nearly always paddle solo, and will be installing a solo seat to replace the solo thwart/pedestal unit I was wondering about reducing the overall gunwale width.

Yeah, I know that it would necessatate adjusting seat and yoke widths etc, and I could never get it down to 28 or 29 inches, but hey, I can dream can’t I?


with too much time on my hands

Why not…I widen my Rendezvous…

I pinched my Old Town Pack
Took it in almost 3" at the gunwale. Significant reduction in rocker and a decent improvement in tracking. It is still a short fat boat but much better suits my needs.

I sold my MRE and am building
a 28" wide replacement.


– Last Updated: Feb-02-05 6:00 PM EST –

I narrowed my 16' Prospector, can't remember the numbers, I think I brought it in almost 2 inches. In theory you could be taking out some rocker, and it may make your chines more "edgy" (less stable).

You should be able to find some discussion of it on a forum at Canadian Canoe Routes.

When I had the seats, thwart and yoke out, I put 2 or 3 cam straps around the boat and found that I could adjust the width very precisely.


what type are
you building Matt?

Great suggestions
I figgered teh gunwales would be pretty flexy with the thwarts & seats out, so it will be interesting to see how much pinch I can accomplish. Mike’s comment about the resulting odd gunwale angles makes sense - it will probably be the limiting factor. I’m sure the shallow V will become more pronounced. I like the idea of modifying the end plates with a heat gun. Mine are the old version - short ABS plates. Cam straps seem like a good idea too.

Thanks all!


15’ x 28" x 12" deep. I just cut the keel for it. Got the ribs installed. I’ve just been letting this project flow along. No clear end product yet but it’s coming together nicely. Just wanted something light, relatively stable, and different. Will use on Michigan’s trout rivers.

I also just like building skin-on-frame boats (third one but first canoe) with the freedom to make it however I want. This design has a bit of “kayak” in it.